by Michelle Diener
A story of contrasts...
DARK AMBITIONS features Rose, the main character from my novel DARK HORSE. In DARK HORSE, Rose has the dangerous task of befriending Sazo, a deadly and angry artificial intelligence. When I had to work on a pet for Rose to befriend in DARK AMBITIONS, I thought it would be a fun contrast to give her a contrast to Sazo. A friendly, very cute and tiny animal called Sweetpea.
Sazo isn't a pet, but both he and Sweetpea are dependent on Rose in similar ways, and I loved having them balance each other out.
When working on what I wanted my small, cute animal to look like, I considered the environment of the planet I'd put Rose on, and then went looking for something that would suit that environment. A sugar glider / flying squirrel fit the bill and I loved how well the illustrator interpreted my description.
I fell completely in love with Sweetpea while writing DARK AMBITIONS, and I hope my readers do, too!
Michelle Diener's story in Pets In Space 5 is Dark Ambitions, A Class 5 Novella.
It's been months since Rose McKenzie was taken far from Earth. She's trying to make a place for herself amongst the Grih, with help from her Grihan lover, Captain Dav Jallan, and the dangerous and loyal Sazo, a powerful artificial intelligence who's integrated with an infamous Class 5 battleship.
When Rose gets the chance to join an exploration team going down to collect information from a planet in Grihan airspace, she jumps at the opportunity to stretch her legs and breathe some real air.
But someone is already on the planet—the Krik—and they don't want anyone to know what they're up to. The Krik are the chaos agents of the United Council, often riding the edge of the law or over it. They ambush the exploration team and take them prisoner, but they don't realize they didn't get everyone. They didn't get Rose.
With Dav, and his spaceship the Barrist, lured away by a distress signal, Rose and Sazo, along with a furry friend Rose has made, are the exploration team's only hope at rescue. And Rose never leaves a friend behind.
Read more about Michelle Diener and her books on her website: https://www.michellediener.com/
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